A/N: This is a rewrite in order to keep it in line with "His Way". The original posting had the students under the old House system that was done away with in my main story.
Disclaimer: This story is based on characters and situations created and owned by JK Rowling, various publishers including but not limited to Bloomsbury Books, Scholastic Books and Raincoast Books, and Warner Bros., Inc. No money is being made and no copyright or trademark infringement is intended.
A/N: This is a side story to my current work, "He Did it His Way". I had this idea a while back and made mention of it in the main story, but I don't want to break up the continuity of the main story, I will just reference things in here along the way.
The Mudblood Revolution
The first anyone heard of what would be called The Mudblood Revolution by its supporters and detractors alike; was on a crisp autumn day at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. It came in the form of a question asked, of all places, in the extremely boring History of Magic lesson taught by the equally boring Professor Binns, a ghost who could describe death and destruction in such a way that his lectures acted as a cure for insomnia. The question was asked by a young man named Justin Finch-Fletchley, a sixth year (former) Hufflepuff.
Mr. Finch-Fletchley was a brilliant young muggleborn who had, prior to being notified by Hogwarts about his magical abilities, been tapped to attend the exclusive school named Eton in the non-magical world. It was a surprise to many in later years that he had been sorted into Hufflepuff, his brilliance should have made him the perfect Ravenclaw, but for his ethos of hard work and loyalty to those who deserved it. Justin had read not only all of the assigned textbooks through sixth year, but also the seventh year text, and something confused him. He raised his hand and got the professor's attention.
Having someone do something other than sleep in his class, or in the rare situation of Hermione Granger, actually take notes, surprised the professor to the point that he dropped his spectacles, although they, being as insubstantial as he, did not fall to the floor. Professor Binns snatched them out of the air, put them back on, then peered at his student.
"Yes, Mr. Finch-Fletchley? Is there a problem?"
"Not a problem sir, just a question. For the past five and a half years, you have spoken on Goblin revolts, wars with giants and werewolves, vampire massacres, and various Dark Lords. I have also read the assigned curriculum for the course through all seven years. There has not been, either in this class or the textbook, any mention of muggleborn and half bloods asking for or demanding equal rights in the wizarding world, at least in Britain. In your experience, has there ever been such a movement?"
The good professor frowned; he was not used to students who actually thought for themselves. Since this was such a rare occurrence, he would humour the young man and attempt to answer to the best of his ability.
"There have occasionally been rumbles of discontent, why I do not know. In the late 1600s there were some muggleborns who wanted to change the government, when they complained, they of course, were ignored. After all, the Lords of the Wizengamot rule by divine authority, handed down from a time shortly after the Founders. The malcontents in question decided to leave their place in society and emigrate with muggles to the American Colonies. They were never heard from again. Also in the 1700s and 1800s, there were a few grumblers who were turned over to the muggle authorities and sent to Australia. They also never came back. Was there a particular reason for this line of questioning?"
"Actually sir, there is. I have observed that there are no muggleborns and very few half bloods working in positions of responsibility in the Government here. The vast majority of muggleborns are either stuck in low paying jobs where they have no real chance of advancement, or they build their own businesses, becoming the shop owners of Diagon Alley or Hogsmeade."
"I fail to see the problem. They have a chance for advancement under a capitalist system."
"But not enough of a chance, sir. Although the muggleborn and half bloods own the businesses, all of the buildings are owned by the old pureblood families who charge so much rent that the shopkeepers cannot get ahead. They are also taxed differently. While the old pureblood families pay a very low tax on investment income, the shopkeepers and wage earners pay a much higher tax because their money comes from earned income. The muggleborn pay for most of the government that they have no say in. The Wizengamot consists of all old pureblood families, and the Minister, although not usually a noble, is always at least a pureblood commoner. There is taxation, but no representation."
The professor frowned. "I don't know quite what to tell you other than the natural order of things is for the rich and powerful to be in charge, and the others should be grateful that they have a place in the magical world, rather than to have to struggle through life as a muggle, earning their keep by their sweat and toil. Now, enough of that, in 1261, the goblin chief Ripclaw gathered his troops together………"
The class, which had come to life for a few minutes, promptly dropped back off to sleep, many silently cursing Justin for causing enough interest in the class as to wake them up. In many of their dreams, however, a small spark was lit.
Later that day
"Justin!" a young female voice was heard to call out. The voice belonged to the pretty blond witch named Susan Bones.
"What was all that in Binn's class today? Are you attempting to break a fine old Hogwarts tradition by actually having us learn something in History of Napping?"
Justin laughed, but then grew serious. "Susan, let me answer in the form of a question. What are your plans when you leave Hogwarts?"
"I plan to become a healer, why?"
"Do you have any idea how many non-purebloods hold the position of Healer in Britain?"
"I'm sure there are quite a few, but I have no idea what the figure is."
"The answer is 'none'. There are plenty Medi-Witches and Medi-Wizards, but no Healers. They just never seem to be able to pass their certification in front of the Board, which, by the way, is made up of Purebloods. And of course, the reason it is made up of Purebloods is that the Board consists of all Healers. There have been many who passed their written exams, both those to get into Healer school and the finals, but the few who pass the orals to enter Healer school just never make it past the Orals for certification. They are then either shunted into a career as a Medi-Witch/Wizard, give up their dream, or emigrate to a different country and become Healers there. Some countries have very small Healer schools because they count on our country to send them qualified people through the discrimination practiced here."
To say that Ms. Bones was floored would be putting it mildly. "I never knew…"
"Of course not; you are a Pureblood. Those things will never come up unless you are on the certifying board. Don't get me wrong Susan, I have no problem with you, but I sometimes feel that I have wasted my time here trying to obtain a quality education. Had I ignored the letter and gone to Eton, I would be on track for a great career. Now I am over five years behind and stuck with my choice." During this time, other Dorm 4 students had taken note of the conversation.
"So what is the solution; do you plan some sort of uprising?"
"Heavens no! We already have a bunch of Pureblood supremacists waging war to get rid of us. I believe what will happen is that many of us will take our magical educations here and leave for other countries. This is what is known in the muggle world as 'brain drain', and the upshot is that it weakens the country of origin and strengthen the countries of arrival. It is really a shame, but I foresee Britain's magical world collapsing within the next hundred years, much sooner should the Supremacists win this war. In a short while, should the dark forces grow stronger, the muggleborns and half bloods will emigrate, after all, what person who is already a second class citizen wants to stick around and defend the country that thinks so little of them."
"Professor Binns spoke about the muggleborns who emigrated with muggles to the colonies; some of their descendants are the reason that America is no longer a group of colonies under Great Britain, but rather an independent country. The families of Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson, two wizards who were instrumental in the American Revolution, emigrated to the colonies in the 1600s. Jefferson became the American's third president; in Britain, he would have been lucky to become a shopkeeper in thrall to a pureblood landlord. Although in Britain they called the American Revolution 'The Presbyterian Rebellion', with Horace Walpole of the British Parliament claiming that 'Cousin America has run off with a Presbyterian Parson', referring to a pastor named Witherspoon who signed the Declaration of Independence; the root cause of the revolt was similar to the situation we have here today. The people were taxed and used as sweat labor to feed the Lords and King here. They were taxed without representation, and had no real ability to secure their and their family's futures. They revolted simply because they had no other place to go where it would be better."
"So where do you plan to go when you finish school?" asked a third year muggleborn.
"Probably either America or Australia. I don't fancy having to learn a new language, although I could probably fit in well in Canada. Most other countries have no blood supremacy movements, other than a few in Eastern Europe, and would fight fiercely against anyone trying to change their system, including our present Dark Lord."
"This is terrible," said Susan. "But what can anyone do about it?"
"At this point, I don't know that anything can be done other than either leave or grab some popcorn and watch the destruction of society. Don't worry though Susan, with you being a pureblood, and from a noble family to boot, you should be able to keep your dreams and future, at least until either this Dark Lord or the next one finishes off the country. I would however suggest that you move most of your assets out of the country, because I foresee things coming to a flash point soon."
"Surely it cannot be as bad as you say," said Ernie MacMillan, a fellow sixth year, but a pureblood.
"You can deny it all you want, but the facts are out there, you can discover the same things that I did with a bit of hard work and research. Since you are a pureblood, you have never felt the sting of bigotry. The worst anyone could say about you is that you were a 'Puff."
At that moment, a divide began in the common room of the Dorm 4. Several first year muggleborn students began to write letters home to ask their parents if they could withdraw from Hogwarts and return to muggle life; half blood students writing home to find out if it was as bad as Mr. Finch- Fletchley had claimed. Older students who had too much invested in the system to leave it began rethinking their career goals and thinking about emigration possibilities. Within two hours, all of the school owls and many privately owned owls were streaking to their destinations, almost emptying the Owlery.
The other thing that happened was that Dorm 4 students of less than pureblood status began to speak with their counterparts in other dorms, telling them of Mr. Finch-Fletchley's findings, and asking questions that had no ready answer. Those other students took the conversation to their fellow half blood and muggleborn students in their dorms with similar results as Dorm 4.
No one knew it at that time, but a revolution had begun.